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25 Apr, 2017 11:33

Transgender students ‘shouldn’t have to declare sex for uni sports teams,’ says NUS

Transgender students ‘shouldn’t have to declare sex for uni sports teams,’ says NUS

Transgender and intersex students should not have to declare their birth gender when applying to university sports teams, the National Union of Students (NUS) is expected to rule.

Students are currently only allowed to join university sports teams based on the sex they were born as rather than what gender they identify with now.

This can act as a “barrier” for trans students, according to a motion due to be debated by the NUS at its annual conference on Tuesday.

“These demands … can make sport inaccessible for trans students who cannot or do not wish to medically transition and can alienate and prevent those who are transitioning from partaking in sport. Furthermore, intersex students can feel unwelcome in gendered sports teams altogether.”

It proposes that “trans and intersex students should be able to train and compete in whichever sports team best fits their gender identity,” and adds that those students should not be asked to disclose their legal sex in order to participate in university sport.

Other motions due to be debated include whether the NUS should launch an inquiry into the effect of “no platform” and “safe space” policies on free speech.

Some delegates will also attempt to ban clapping and whooping at all future NUS events, on the basis that these are not accessible to disabled students. The motion calls for “reduced cheering or unnecessary loud noises on conference floor, including whooping and clapping,” and warns of “consequences for those who ignore this requirement.”

Also up for debate will be a motion on combatting anti-Semitism, which calls on the NUS to “reaffirm its commitment to tackling anti-Semitism in all of its forms” as well as encouraging discourse on the Israel-Palestine conflict which does not involve anti-Semitic behavior.

The motion, brought by the Sheffield Student Union, says NUS leadership has failed to take Jewish students’ concerns seriously in relation to anti-Semitism.

Other motions to be debated include abolishing the monarchy, stopping social media scams, protesting against US President Donald Trump to stop climate change and getting an NUS discount for Chinese food.